Why campaign to save beautiful Nidd Gorge from relief road was worth the fuss: Yorkshire Post Letters

From: ME Wright, Harrogate.

The viaduct at Nidd Gorge. Picture: Gerard Binks

As one who shuns the spew-and-send outpourings on social media, I was unaware of the abuse suffered by North Yorkshire County Council in the Nidd Gorge ‘relief road’ battle (The Yorkshire Post, October 16).

Some readers may be wondering what the vitriolic fuss is about. The Nidd Gorge is a local gem which few of our visitors get to see. Thanks to long-term, sterling work by a local preservation society, it provides a glorious sylvan walk between Harrogate and Knaresborough.

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Harrogate and Knaresborough risk being turned into giant car parks now Nidd Gorge relief road plan is dead: YP LettersThere is no sight, sound or smell of road traffic and the limited phone signal cannot sustain yapathons – blissful!

Had the ‘relief road’ been built, it would have sent HGVs and other traffic, ploughing along a narrow residential road, within earshot of the gorge. A comparison may be made with the din which intrudes on a certain Leeds gem. There is a significant difference: the Romans built the Great North Road which preceded the A1(M); Temple Newsam came much later.

From: Edward Grainger, Botany Way, Nunthorpe, Middlesbrough.

Having recently voluntarily given up my often under-used motor car, I feel I can realistically speak out concerning Britain’s total dependence on the source of poor air quality.

Unlike my good friend (and fellow letter writer) Jarvis Browning, who points out the difficulties for people living in rural areas without public transport, I am fortunate that I have a train station on my doorstep and access to three bus routes to Middlesbrough, Stokesley and Guisborough.

Everyone who owns a vehicle knows that what the 16-year-old Greta Thunberg, the environmental campaigner, has been saying is correct.

If we fail to protect this planet Earth, future generations will never forgive us for the excessive use of the mode of transport most favoured by not just Britain’s population, but the nations of the developed world.

I feel quite liberated that I will no longer spend enormous amounts of time and money keeping a vehicle on the road.

From: Bob Watson, Baildon.

The region is in urgent need of HS2 and HS3 and a fully electrified regional express metro system centred on Leeds and Bradford.

Mr Bovington brings up the old chestnut about HS2 knocking half an hour off the journey time from Leeds to London.

It really is little to do with that. Instead it is all about the extra capacity that it will create by taking trains away from the hugely congested East and West Coast Main Lines, thereby allowing a substantial number of connections to other places that are currently not best served, or indeed are not being served at all. He also states that HS2 and HS3 are designed to “take people away from West Yorkshire, either to Manchester or London”. Nonsense, these lines will just as readily encourage people to come to this neck of the woods once it is made easier and more attractive.

Finally, he is quite right to push for the reinstatement of the Skipton to Colne line and that from Harrogate to Northallerton via Ripon. These should all be part of the overall package of expectations. So, let’s be positive and go for the lot!

From: Ian Richardson, Railway Street, Beverley.

I recognise that I am in the minority, but as a regular user of Northern rail services, let me offer just a little support to the beleaguered operator (Tom Richmond, The Yorkshire Post, October 15).

I am fortunate not to have to suffer the huge problems commuters face around our biggest cities on a daily basis, although I have had to put up with awful congestion on their Manchester to Sheffield services where rolling stock is also decidedly antiquated.

Yet the operator should be praised for introducing smashing new trains, for example on the Sheffield to Hull and Beverley route, with comfortable seating and free wifi. Moreover, they have also established some imaginative new services such as the Leeds to Chester through trains. For those of us fortunate to travel at quieter times, Northern also offer innovative £10 day ranger tickets throughout most of the year.

So, whilst thousands have good cause to label them Northern Fail, I think we should be prepared to give them some credit. Yet that is unlikely to save them in the coming months.

From: Manuel Cortes, TSSA General Secretary.

When the Tories are saying that Northern Rail might be renationalised you know the death knell of rail privatisation has arrived.

It has never made any sense and now even those who, for dogmatic reasons, pioneered privatisation of our railways are having second thoughts. Taxpayers and passengers have been taken for a ride for far too long while shareholders have laughed all the way to the bank.

If Grant Shapps doesn’t gather the courage to bring Northern and the rest of the franchises back into public ownership, rest assured come the genral election, Labour will.